Use Your Discard to Make Sourdough Date-Orange Breads--Diabetic Friendly
These breads are incredibly nutritious and incredibly good. They are simple to make, and I usually air fry small loaves rather than bake one large loaf in the regular oven. The smaller loaves come out of the air fryer with deeply browned, slightly crispy, but not hard, crusts. White whole-wheat flour, chia seeds, and date puree (you can buy it or see the instructions below) provide plenty of fiber and nutrients in the barely sweet breads, and an egg and Greek yogurt boost the protein content as do the crunchy walnuts. The breads are soft on the inside and have plenty of flavor--enough to eat plain, without any extras. Although the breads are great for breakfast, they also would be good alongside soups, for fancy sandwiches, or served as a special bread for dinner. Enjoy!
Sourdough Date-Orange Breads -- Makes 2 Small Loaves
1 cup starter/discard
1/2 cup of date puree*
1 large egg
1/4 cup of canola oil
1/2 cup of plain Greek yogurt
1/2 teaspoon of orange extract
3 tablespoons of chia seeds
3/4 cup of white whole-wheat flour
In a large bowl combine all of the ingredients listed above and beat them well. Loosely cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the mixture sit for at least an hour. I routinely let my mixture sit for 4-5 hours, and it's fine. When you're ready, add:
1 cup of white whole-wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 cup of chopped or broken walnuts
Stir, then knead into the first mixture the ingredients listed above, kneading for 3-5 minutes and adding an additional 1/2 cup or so of white whole-wheat flour as you knead to prevent the mixture from being too sticky to knead. Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces and form two round loaves, each about the size of a softball. Spritz two 6-inch round pans with non-stick cooking spray and put one dough ball in each pan. Spritz the top of the dough in each pan with non-stick cooking spray and loosely cover the dough with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise until it increases in volume by about one-third. You can lightly score the tops of the loaves if you wish. Air fry the risen dough at 320 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until the loaves are a deep golden brown and/or they reach an internal temperature of at least 190 degrees. Let the breads cool completely for easier slicing.
* Date puree is available commercially, but I make my own because it's cheaper and really easy. If you want a large batch of puree (date puree is good to make a variety of baked goods and as a "healthier" sugar substitute because of the fiber, vitamins, and minerals in dates), simply cover 24 ounces of dried dates with 2 cups of boiling water and let the mixture sit until it cools and the dates are fairly soft (you can let the mixture cool and refrigerate it overnight, if you want). Put the dates/water (the dates will absorb a lot/most of the water) in a food processor or blender and process them/puree them for a few minutes. You should have a thick, dark caramel-colored paste. You can add a little more water to the paste, if it's too thick for your liking. If you refrigerate the paste, it should keep indefinitely. If you want just enough puree for this recipe, cover half a cup of dates with boiling water and let them sit for about 10 minutes or until soft. Pour off the water and mash the dates well with a fork or puree them in a mini-chopper (I go the fork route, because I don't want to wash the chopper).